Absolute Capital Founder Homm Loses Extradition Appeal

Jan 10, 2014 3:57 pm ET

(Updates with lawyer’s comment in fourth paragraph.)

Jan. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Florian Homm, the founder of Cayman Islands-based Absolute Capital Management Holdings Ltd. who was arrested last year in Florence, Italy’s Uffizi Gallery, lost his appeal of an order to extradite him to the U.S.

Italy’s highest court, la Corte Suprema di Cassazione, yesterday rejected Homm’s appeal of the extradition order, said his U.S. lawyer, Jan Handzlik, confirming an earlier report by Agenzia Giornalistica Italia.

Homm, a German national, was arrested last year at the request of U.S. prosecutors, who have charged him with defrauding investors in his hedge funds out of $200 million. Homm had been a fugitive since 2007. Prosecutors said they tracked him down after he started to promote an autobiography recounting his life as “rogue financier” on German television.

“Mr. Homm looks forward to proving his innocence in court,” Handzlik said in an e-mailed statement. “Once all of the evidence is heard, he is confident the facts will demonstrate he acted honestly and in the best interests of investors in the hedge fund ACMH.”

The Italian court also rejected Homm’s appeal concerning his confinement in a Pisa prison, his lawyer said. Homm suffers from multiple sclerosis and had sought to be transfered to a civilian hospital, Handzlik said.

A federal jury in Los Angeles last year indicted Homm for securities fraud. He was accused of “cross trading” billions of shares of penny stocks between the company’s funds to boost the value of the otherwise illiquid securities. Homm and his co- conspirators made more than $53 million from the scheme, prosecutors said.

The case is U.S. v. Homm, 13-00183, U.S. District Court, Central District of California (Los Angeles).

--Editors: Peter Blumberg, Mary Romano